Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

I've been meaning to read the book, but last night I watched the film and my god! For about 20 minutes at the end, I cried my eyes out. It is heartbreaking! But an amazingly told story...

It all begins in Berlin in the Second World War and the story is told through the eyes of a young boy, Bruno, whose father is a solider for the SS. The film begins with the announcement from Bruno's parents that they'll be moving from their house in Berlin, into the countryside. The story then continues with him seeing a 'farm' from his window in his house and questioning if he can play with the children that live on the 'farm'. He also then queries why they are all in 'pajamas' and their servant is wearing them also. It's only until later on the film that he is told that it is a camp for jews. He then befriends Shmuel after running through the gardens and out in to the forest and discovering what he still knows as the 'farm'. Shmuel, is sat at the edge of the camp wearing 'pajamas' with his head hung staring at the floor. Shmuel is a jew of the same age of 8 the Bruno is.

Later on in the film Bruno says "we're not supposed to be friends you and me" and it does literally pull on your heart strings as the saying goes. To see the Second World War and the way it influenced younger generations, like it draws in his sister to thinking jewish people are bad, is definitely a rare occasion. To see the innocence of Bruno and Shmuel and how they don't understand what is going on around them. This can especially been seen in Shmuel's 'missing' father.

I won’t spoil the ending just incase people decide to watch it…

But this is definitely one of the most heartbreaking films I have seen recently and one of the most brilliant films I have seen. Obviously John Boyne is a brilliant writer and I will add details when I have read the book on how they have adapted the book to film. 

The way it has been shot and the realism of the setting I feel is as great as it can be. I think they did a brilliant job of costumes, decor and props to make the time that it is set in come to life! And the way it has been shot as well I feel, plays on the innocence of Bruno. Seen through a young boys innocent eyes of Second World War. It think that they way they have filmed it as to the emotional detailing of the scenes.

This is definitely a film that I feel people should watch, but I do recommend watching it WITH tissues! It does truly break my heart to watch...

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Fear and Irrationality

This isn't a film review at all... I just happened to be lying in bed last night thinking about what fear and things that make us afraid lead us to say or do.

I honestly think that when you believe that you know what you want, sometimes fear can effect that. I know I have said or acting in certain ways through fear of how life could change or what it might become. But what makes us afraid? Why are we afraid of anything? Surely people that say they aren't afraid of anything are? There is something inside us that thrives on fear! It's like the fear of when your on a ride or when you afraid of what decision is right for you career or relationships.

Sometimes I think the fear of life can stop us realising what it is exactly we want. I have this fear at my point of being a graduate. Fear that choosing the direction of job I want might turn out, 20 years down the line, to be one I don't like or want to do anymore. This would mean I'd have to re-learn things that I know now, but might not remember then.

Maybe one day decisions will be simpler. But unfortunately not everything in life is a fairy tale...

Monday, July 25, 2011

Horrible Bosses

The trailers been everywhere so I figured I had to watch it really! Sometimes I feel that some American comedy films can be literally to much but you know what this was pretty enjoyable!

Jason Bateman, Charlie Day and Jason Sudeikis star as three friends who all hate their jobs and eventually get fed up of the way they are treated. So lead to the decision to try and kill their bosses to make their lives easier. But with some errors lead to one of the bosses killing the other, think he's having an affair with his wife! And Charlie Day gets revenge on his sex mad employer (Jennifer Anniston) which is very entertaining.

The whole story very melodramatic but it adds to the comedy of the whole film! All the star character actors are very comedic, especially Charlie Day, Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx! The eccentricity of the characters is brilliant! It's definitely a film that will cheer you up if you having a bad day because you just find yourself laughing at the whole situations! The voice speaker in their car is brilliant! It's shot like a typical Hollywood film because it is seamless! 

It's full of entertaining quotes such as; "You can't win a marathon without putting some bandaids on your nipples!" It's definitely a man film, cos I know they'll be quoting it like a lot of men do the Hangover, I think but women will find it equally entertaining as well!

I'll definitely be watching it again soon!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Cars 2

After Pixar released the first Cars, it wasn't long after that they announced a second follow up film would be on the table. I have to admit I was wary about what the film was going to be like but i thoroughly enjoyed it! It's always hard to follow up a film that has been so popular but I was impressed by this!

It's begins with Miles Axlerod, who previously owned a big oil company, has invented a new renewable source for petrol and is claiming that his racecar Francesco Bernoulli is the fastest racecar around. This leads to a World Grand Prix involving Lightening McQueen. But during the races, the villains purposely knock out other racecars and this eventual leads to British spies thinking Mater is a spy aswell! Then there is the process of them trying to save the day to stop the villains.

When I watched it I loved the story-lines and the build up of the scenes. As soon as I saw the first film, Mater was my favourite character the comments he came out with were so entertaining. This carry’s on in to the new film, the scenes he are in are so entertaining, especially with the disguise scene! The only fault I felt was I wished there was a tiny bit more scenery with the rest of the characters from the first film, such as Sally.

The animation that Pixar produces just keeps getting better and better! The way the produce animated scenery, such as the towns, you can see the time and effort gone in to creating it to look 'realistic'. The building styles and the detailing of the colours are amazing, I loved the way that had created Big Ben! The crowd scene for the Grand Prix grid is so full of life!  One of the things that I truly love in the first one the 'flies' are baby cars with wings and in this one there are mini planes with wings. Where they get the creativity from to create these ideas are incredible! 

If you have kids definitely take them to see this, they will love it!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Torchwood: Miracle Day

I loved Torchwood, it was based in Wales, wittiness, characters and had amazing storylines! 

Introducing the funded American's no way near the standard it used to be. It's seems to be now a program confused about what it should be! It was never CSI or ER but the more they release the more that is what it turns into and it was never like this before. The are beginning to use the similar camera movements in them as well! In two episodes there has been around 20 minutes maximum of it being based in it's origins of Wales and this is really disappointing and saddening to see. It is truly been taken away from it's roots! 

I zone out easier to this series because it isn't the same and I wish I didn't. If it wasn't for Russell T Davies, it probably wouldn't even go to Wales. Why is it when funding is involve it takes away the originality of programmes? 

The highlights of the series so far has been Gwen's entertaining comments about being Welsh and not English! And of course the long awaited return of Mr Captain Jack Harkness himself!

I really hope that the rest of the season changes and goes back to how it first began! It's good that other countries feel that it's a brilliant program and recognize the talented people involved to help fund it. But I don't agree with try to change it after 3 series and the hard amount of time that they have spent building up their fan base. I can understand the logic for widening the audience, but what about the audience and fans they already have? Do they not matter as long as it becomes 'Americanized' and generic programming?

I truly hope it returns to the roots and back to being a Welsh originated program...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2

The long awaiting end to the series arrived and it certainly went out with something special!

Finally after 10 years of Warner Brother's releasing of the first film, they've finally released the final piece to the collection of films. For those who have read the books religiously this film is very true to the book, in-comparison to a lot of the others. They've obviously changed somethings, the script writers always do. But they kept in Molly's line "Not my daughter, you bitch", which I wrote about previously, which made me chuckle through the tears of emotion from the narrative.

I have to admit, I was worried about whether this film would live up to the book and to be honest the team that worked on it are amazing for how brilliantly produced the final film is. 

The CGI/Special Effects in this film particularly is bloody brilliant. The scenes with the fight scenes especially if you compare them to the original green screen footage. The camera movements, sound; everything is seamless and has that same magically feeling that I felt when I watched the first film.

I think this film is the best for acting especially because I feel the characters grow the most within the book and that is portrayed in the film. For example, seeing Neville complete character transformation, Molly becoming the protector and Ron and Hermione finally getting together. These are something that made me so happy! Harry, of course, grows up massively to become the 'powerful' wizard to defeat Voldemort.
 There is only two things I truly feel they should have shown more in both parts is Lupin and Tonk's relationship and obviously PotterWatch which made the first half of the book for me.

Before I went to watch I have to admit I did read up to see if the epilogue of the book '19 years later' would be the final scene of the film so I was expecting it. The transformations of the actors to make them look older was remarkable, I think it only truly worked on the male actors mainly. Bonnie (Ginny) is quite convincing but I think they could of done something more with Emma (Hermione).

I went to watch it in IMAX 3D and I am so grateful that they didn't have anything flying out of the screen. I think it brought the characters to life even more, if you get chance to go see it in IMAX 3D jump at the chance. It's something truly magical.

I am huge HP fan (books & films) and I certainly am going to miss the series now it's fully come to the end. 

"Do not pity the dead, Harry. Pity the living and above all, those who live without love."
 Albus Dumbledore

Sunday, July 10, 2011

True Grit

I recently watched True Grit starring Jeff Bridges, Hailee Steinfeld and Matt Damon. It's a new remake of John Wayne's 1969 western film.

The story is brilliantly written, which is probably why they re-made it! I'm not a huge lover of westerns to be honest so I found it quite hard going at some points. But the way they've shot the film reinforces the era that it's set in. It's quite beautiful! It has a lot of the typical gun shooting scenes that you would expect from a western.

Jeff Bridges is a hell of an actor and he plays Cogburn the miserable veteran that Mattie (Hailee Steinfeld) hires to help her revenge the man that murders her father.

Hailee Steinfeld's acting makes the film brilliant! The dominance she has an actress already is spectacular, she manages to play such a brilliant part. She's only 14 but she's definitely gonna be an actress to watch out for in the future!

Matt Damon plays La Boeuf, a definite contrast to the rugged Cogburn. He's slightly more polite but manages to blow Cogburn's and Mattie's first chance at getting revenge on the 'baddies'.

It might not have be a film I'd watch again in a hurry but I would recommend it :)

Thursday, July 07, 2011

On a happier note...


It's nearly here, a week tomorrow will finally get to watch the second of the finale! After 10 years of films, it's nearly time to say goodbye. I for one am really not looking forward to it. Having read all the books repeatedly and eagerly waiting and having the excitement of all the books, for it to be the last film. The reality is for a lot of people, including me, it's been a huge part of their lives. 

We've grown up with them. Laughed with them. Cried with them. It's going be to strange that there is going to be no more... 

I love the characters, the actors (apart from one) and the films. I've been there at mid-night in the queues to watch of people buying the books. It's been apart of my life and something that me and my sister having nearly always watched together and race to who would finish the book first to talk about it. I have the excitement of seeing the film in 3D IMAX (I've never seen anything in IMAX), I'm a bit scared because I know I'm going to jump at things flying out (I hope there won't be). I'll be prepared with the tissues to cry as much as I did to the book...but one line from Julie Walter's, Molly, will definitely make up for all of that! "Not my daughter, YOU BITCH!"

One day when the re-make the series of films, I hope to watch them and rant about how they aren't as good as the original. And again rip them apart for things they've missed out of the book. This is why I haven't re-read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows recently, so that I won't do this straight after. 
It's part of the experience of the love of the books.

"Where you treasure is, there your heart will also be" Albus Dumbledore

News of the World

As someone who wants to go in to the media industry as a whole, I don't understand how some people can have the disrespect to do that to people. I really don't understand how someone can see that as okay. I know the journalism market is very competitive but how could you sleep at night knowing you've done that?

The truth is you hacked peoples phones, celebrities can be overlooked (it's not right!) but to do that to families that have been through the murder of young children. Your sick! Rebecca Brooks leading a newspaper, don't act innocent about not knowing, I don't think anyone believes you, you have to many friends in high places, including Murdoch.

But then again it's not just these its the policemen you have a LOT to answer for, taking bribes to provide information on cases. WELL DONE! That's how people's family like Milly Dowlers go through all that they did in court.

I just hope the family's can get some compensation, but it won't really help with knowing that they had the ability to do that, and have their children's name out of such a horrible situation.

Sorry to rant, I just don't think that this is right...

Monday, July 04, 2011

Foo Fighters at Milton Keynes Bowl Arena

Last night, I went to watch the Foo Fighters supported by Jimmy Eat World and Biffy Clyro at Milton Keynes. WOW! What an amazing night!

Jimmy Eat World came on first, after another support act but I don't know who they are. Not a huge amount of people there knew who they were but I was up dancing singing along to their old songs mostly like The Middle and Sweetness. They were a very good start to the evening! Certainly had a few people dancing along!

Then Biffy, having seen them for the first time last year, it was even more spectacular to see them in an open air field, that felt more like a mini-festival, surrounded by 65,000 people! Singing mostly songs of the Only Revolutions album, there was a lot more people dancing and singing along to them. They played two of my favourites God & Satan, giving me goosebumps and Born on a Horse, which I danced like an idiot too! It was perfect sunshine when they performed Many of Horror and the feeling of most of the 65,000 audience singing the chorus back at Simon Neil and the rest of the boys was something truly special. Finishing with Mountains was a perfect end to the set.

Finally the Foo's! My god they know how to put on a show! Opening with Bridge Burning of the new album every person in the crowd feeling the excitement as they came out to perform the first song. When they played My Hero, you could see the passion of the song across Dave Grohl's face and having everyone sing the chorus to him as he walked down the catwalk stage in to the crowd. When they moved on to perform Dear Rosemary with Bob Mould who inspired Dave Grohl in to music, it was an amazing feeling to see how much he respects other artists. The passion and energy in his performance is something amazing! To think how long the band has been in the music and to still have that energy is remarkable! They are one of a kind!

Best of You, I don't think I have ever loved a song being performed as much. When he took a break at the end of the song to drink, 65,000 people singing back the "oooooohhhooo" "Oooohhhhhhhhhooo" bit of the song. I had goosebumps all over as Dave Grohl was speechless on stage by what was happening, it was an amazing feeling! I don't think he expected that to ever happen, this is what made it more special.

The encore...This was definitely the highlight of the show. Singing Wheels and Times Like These was amazing enough. But then he invited to the stage Seasick Steve and John Paul Jones (guitarist of Led Zep) for a jamming session where Dave Grohl played the drums. This is made it the most surreal nights of my life. I never expected that, it was truly a one-off! Three legends on stage at once...and acting like its something common! 

After that show stopper, they came out to perform the last song of the night Everlong, Wow! Putting every last bit of their energy into the song. They commented on how this night probably won't happen again and it's very true, the audience was hyper and the band was electric! Finally ending the last note of the song with fireworks. It was truly the best performance I have seen!

If you get chance to see them, take it!